I'm the kind of person who skips to the conversation when reading a book.
I came behind her to look over her shoulder.
“It looks like Florida,” she said.
The panhandle and peninsular shape of Florida are unmistakable. It was indeed Florida.
“That was before Florida was a part of the United States,” I explained.
“Where was Florida then?” she asked.
“Right there,” I pointed to the Spanish Lands on her map. “Florida must have belonged to Spain before it became part of the United States.”
“Oh,” was all she said, but I could tell she didn’t quite grasp what I was saying.
I pondered for days what could be so difficult about this concept. Geography seems pretty straight forward. Except I think, in Hannah’s mind, the part that didn’t make sense was Florida not being Florida.
How could Florida not be Florida? She knows Florida. It’s green and luscious, filled with citrus groves and palm trees; it has warm, sunny beaches with scattered shells and dolphins swimming just off-shore. How could Florida not be Florida?
And how can Florida belong to anyone?
It reminded me of Psalm 24:
The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof…
Sometimes I think that the intuitiveness of a child is more brilliant than any adult. We think we own lands and things. We think geography is a straight forward concept, when, in fact, we miss the point altogether.
We are just stewards here. Florida never really belonged to Spain or the USA or the native peoples. It always has been the Lord’s.